Wiltshire

Horatio Chapple garden opens at Salisbury hospital

Two nurses with a patient in Horatio's Garden
Image caption The £300,000 Horatio's Garden was funded by charitable donations

A hospital garden dedicated to a Wiltshire schoolboy killed by a polar bear has been officially opened.

Eton pupil Horatio Chapple, 17, from Bishopstone, died after being attacked during an expedition in Norway in August 2011.

Horatio wanted to train as a doctor and had been helping out in the spinal unit of Salisbury District Hospital.

His father David, who is a consultant there, hoped Horatio's Garden would be a source of inspiration for patients.

'Fitting legacy'

"Patients being treated for spinal cord injury face long stays in hospital during which time they undergo an intensive and demanding rehabilitation programme, re-learning the most basic of skills," Mr Chapple said.

"We hope that Horatio's Garden is a fitting legacy to Horatio."

Image caption Horatio Chapple was expected to read medicine after completing his studies

At the time of his death, Horatio was preparing his personal statement for medical school.

His research showed patients needed a garden - a place in the fresh air and away from the hospital ward.

Patients told him they wanted a beautiful place to escape to and somewhere they could spend time with relatives and friend.

The £300,000 garden, at the hospital's Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre, was funded by charitable donations, with many of his friends organising fundraising events.

Horatio was on a trip organised by the British Schools Exploring Society when the polar bear attacked its campsite in Svalbard.

The 250kg bear was shot dead by a member of the group.

Group leader Michael Reid, 29, from Plymouth; Andrew Ruck, 27, from Brighton; 17-year-old Patrick Flinders, from Jersey; and 16-year-old Scott Bennell-Smith, from St Mellion in Cornwall; were also injured.

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